Gucci Surpasses Burberry as Most Digitally Savvy Luxury Brand

Alessandro Michele has done as much for the brand's "digital IQ" as he has for its aesthetic and sales.
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Dhani Mau
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Alessandro Michele has done as much for the brand's "digital IQ" as he has for its aesthetic and sales.

Long before Snapchat even existed, we've been keeping tabs on how luxury fashion brands have developed their online presences via research firm L2's annual "Digital IQ Index" — which benchmarks the digital performance of 85 luxury brands in the U.S. market, examining investments in e-commerce, search visibility, social-media engagement and mobile aptitude. And since we've been keeping track, Burberry has always come out on top, having consistently been quickest to offer e-commerce, jump on new social-media platforms, engage with consumers, etc. But in 2016, it's been dethroned by a brand that's recently undergone an all-encompassing revamp: Gucci.

They're still neck-and-neck: Gucci received a Digital IQ of 145, while Burberry received a 144 (both are in the second percentile), but it marks the first time Gucci has broken into the top five — clearly the result of creative director Alessandro Michele and CEO Marco Bizzari's influence. L2 praised the brand's elegant e-commerce site for its customer service, content integration and shoppable features, as well as the brand's visibility on third-party e-commerce sites. In addition, social-media interactions doubled over last year and it's also succeeded in digital marketing — including SEO and effective online advertising.

Gucci's online presence has gotten a total overhaul under Michele and Bizzari. The brand relaunched its website in October and has seen significant growth in e-com sales since. The brand has also introduced a slew of social-media initiatives over the past year, from artist collaborations and cool celebrity takeovers on Instagram to campaign reveals and behind-the-scenes content on Snapchat.

Clearly, it's paying off. See the full top 10 below and find more here.

1. Gucci
2. Burberry
3. Coach
3. Ralph Lauren (tie with Coach)
5. Tory Burch
6. Kate Spade
6. Michael Kors (tie with Kate Spade)
8. Louis Vuitton
9. Tommy Hilfiger
10. Cole Haan
10. Stuart Weitzman (tie with Cole Haan)

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Homepage photo: Glen Luchford/Gucci